Ghana’s health workers exempted from paying taxes amid COVID-19 fight

Health workers in Ghana have been exempted from paying taxes for three months as they lead the West African nation in fighting the COVID-19 pandemic, President Nana Akufo-Addo announced.

The move is part of Ghana’s enhanced response to the disease as figures continue to rise across Africa.

“Government has also decided that all health workers will not pay taxes on their emoluments for the next three months, i.e. April, May and June. Furthermore, all frontline health workers will receive an additional allowance of fifty percent (50%) of their basic salary per month, i.e. for March, April, May and June,” President Akufo-Addo said in a statement on Sunday.

The 76-year-old leader also announced free transportation for health workers in the capital Accra, Kumasi and Kasoa to last the entire duration of restrictions.

President Akufo-Addo grabbed headlines last month for his plea to the public to stay at home as a way of defeating COVID-19.

He wrote on Twitter: “We know how to bring the economy back to life. What we do not know is how to bring people back to life.”

In his statement on Sunday, the president again called upon Ghanaians to remain indoors to curb the spread of COVID-19.

“I will continue, passionately, to appeal to you to observe prescribed social distancing and good personal hygiene to contain community spread. These enhanced hygiene protocols must become a part of our everyday lives. We must not abandon them,” he said.

Ghana is one of over 50 African states that have recorded COVID-19 cases. The continent’s reported cases have surpassed 9,000, with over 400 deaths. Over 800 patients have recovered.